PAN, October 24, 2013

21 would-be child bombers detained

The children, aged between 7 and 12 years, were detained

By Mahbob Shah Mahbob

Intelligence operatives in eastern Laghman province have detained 21 children, some as young as 7, being taken to Pakistan for receiving suicide attack training, an official said on Thursday.

The children, aged between 7 and 12 years, were detained a day earlier after they entered Laghman from Nuristan province, the provincial National Directorate of Security (NDS) spokesman Nasrullah Nasrat told a press conference.

He said the children had been picked from various areas in Nuristan and were being taken to Pakistan through Laghman by Qari Usman when they were arrested as a result of an intelligence report.

He said Usman had been arrested and was being interrogated and the children were officially released to the Nuristan peace committee.

A member of Nuristan peace committee, who did not want to be named, said abject poverty and lack of schools were some of the major reasons forcing youth and children into joining terrorists.

He said armed groups were taking advantage of lack of schools and use children in suicide attacks and other terrorist activities.The Ministry of Education says religious schools have been established in all provinces in order to prevent children from going to Pakistan for religious studies.

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